The Most Haunted Places in Savannah
Savannah is considered one of the most haunted cities in America. Shannon Scott, expert in all things paranormal, relays the stories behind the most haunted places in the city.
The Harper-Fowlkes Mansion (c.1843)
Few Savannah houses have held such a mystique as this one; reposed as a sort of sole survivor of a grand neighborhood mostly gone. In 1939 Harry Hervey in his novel, The Damned Don’t Cry, describes the house, “at night, plunged into a rich depth of shadow, it broods, its attic like a tired brain.” Yes, has enjoyed feast and survived famine. Today it serves as a touring home full of furnishings from one of the original dames of historic preservation. But for years it seemed all the more aloof as only men in tuxedos could be seen milling about in the faint light as they discussed the business of America’s first secret society, The Society of the Cincinnati. The descendants of the society’s founder, George Washington, still conduct business here. And in such a home designed for the elite, should it be a wonder that it’s the house’s Irish servants most observed still operating in the home? The word “IRISH” is carved into the threshold, through which they entered their living quarters and their kitchens, as well as in the cellar where it is not uncommon to hear the gears and clicks of the walk-in safe operating. Nor is it uncommon to hear” before murmuring Yes, time has passed here but the spiritual past is like a ritual the home is constantly acting out. The Harper-Fowlkes is like a secret society meeting house of ghosts. One wonders who they’ll initiate next.
EXTRA STRANGE FACTOIDS: During During the Civil War occupation of Savannah, owner Aaron Champion took all of the gold in the Planter’s Bank (the Olde Pink House today) and dumped it down the well of the home, returning it to the bank upon Sherman’s exit. In the early 20th century, a gas station was built on top of the well site. Years later in the 1970s, local historian and king of area bottle diggers, Paul Blatner, acting on a hunch, got permission to dig the well site and found one unrecovered $10 gold piece.
Captain Henry Dickerson Homes 201 & 203 E. York St. (c.1854)
We forget that people once died more in their homes than hospitals, that the funeral wake was held there and often the fourth floors were both birth and dying quarters. Dickerson was a Savannah portmaster, fire chief, well respected veteran and fiercely devoted family man. He lost four of his five children, and two of his wives in these homes. He never got over the death of his favorite granddaughter. In the 1990s, a young couple moved into the fourth floor and noted a leak, which came from an old attic opening. The boyfriend climbed up and discovered a box full of maritime antiques, spyglass, compass, and burned papers corresponding with the 1854 burning of Dickerson’s wooden home in the same location. It seems the trouble began these articles were brought into their apartment. The specter of an old man wielding a torch, holding the hand of a young girl began to appear to them. It was also about this time their relationship began to disintegrate and as the arguments grew, so did the intensity of the two ghosts, notably one evening when the spirits angrily flew around their bed as if to say, “We won’t have this in our home!” Needless to say, the boyfriend moved out and then she eventually broke the lease just to find a more welcoming home!
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Want to get the grits scared outta ya’? Check out these haunted tours!
Beyond the Grave The Old Savannah Tours Grave Encounters Tour will “bring the dead to life,” and you may be visited by some of Savannah’s more notable ghosts along the way. The Grave Encounters tour begins nightly at 7:30 pm and you may choose to add to your paranormal and ghostly experience with a narrated tour of the Sorrel Weed House, as featured on the Syfy Channel’s Ghost Hunters. Reservations are strongly recommended to guarantee seating. Visit oldsavannahtours.com or call 912.234.8128 to schedule a tour.
Ghost Talk Ghost Walk: This is one of Savannah’s original ghost tours and one of the most popular. The tour has been featured on the History Channel’s show Haunted Savannah and it takes a fun, frothy look at some of the Historic District’s most haunted spots. ghosttalkghostwalk.com / 912.233.3896
Savannah Tours by Foot: This tour offers a “Creepy Crawl” walking tour through some of Savannah’s most haunted pubs. The tour lasts about 2 1/2 hours and lets participants grab drinks while hearing the creepy history behind the city. savannahtours.com / 912.238.3843
Savannah Ghost Walks: The “Ghosts of Low Country Tour” has a unique perspective on a traditional ghost tour, by offering guests some insight about African voodoo and Irish as well as Native American practices and various beliefs. savannahghostwalks.com / 9121.508.1234
Hearse Ghost Tours: For an extra creepy element to your ghost tour, perhaps try visiting various haunted sites in a hearse. The hearses have been converted to fit a good amount of people, but were created from an actual hearse itself. Don’t worry though, all dead bodies have been removed; it’s the spirits you have to watch out for! hearseghosttours.com / 912.695.1578
Southern Strolls Walking Tours: This walking tour is great for those interested in the history of Savannah, but want an eerie twist to their lesson. Luckily, the tour is conducted once every night from Monday through Saturday, so there is plenty to learn about the ghosts of the city! southernstrolls.com 888.647.9255
Tara Haunted Tours: This ghost tour has a signature “Boos and Brews Walking Ghost Tour” that will introduce you to spirits of many different forms (including the liquid variety) in Savannah. This popular tour will give you the lowdown on the creepy history of Savannah, while stopping to let you enjoy some drinks in haunted pubs along the way. taratourssavannah.com 904.729.2797
Sixth Sense Savannah: This ghost tour has been frightening participants since 1995. It is one of the most popular ghost tours in Savannah and there is even a family-friendly tour available. sixthsensesavannah.com / 912.292.0960
Blue Orb Ghost Tours: This tour is considered one of the most credible and creepy tours in Savannah. They not only know Savannah’s many haunted hotspots and secrets, they relish in sharing the ghoulish details in a way that will leave you spellbound. blueorbtours.com 912.665.4258
Ghosts and Gravestones: This ghost tour is incredibly popular and renowned within the city of Savannah. It even has its own trolley to take participants from location to location. All the creepiest, most haunted places are covered on this spooky tour. ghostsandgravestones.com/savannah 866.955.1674
Shannon Scott Journeys: The beautiful and haunting Bonaventure cemetery is a highlight on the Shannon Scott Tours. The tour guide knows an incredible amount about the history behind the cemetery and those who call it home. Tours are offered in the day time as well as night. shannonscott.com / 866.955.1674
Old Town Trolley Tour: They say you don’t have to look far for ghosts in Savannah, and the easiest place to check them out is at the Andrew Low House on Lafayette Square. This is the home of Juliette Low, founder of the Girl Scouts. Christina Prince of Old Town Trolley Tours says only on their “Ghosts and Gravestones” tour is the Low mansion open for investigation. Visitors have heard the heavy footsteps of Thomas Milledge, the Low’s longtime family butler–and sometimes the jingle of his household keys, she says. Another popular–and exclusive–stop is Perkins & Sons Chandlery on River Street. This store once carried all the goods needed by ships that stopped at the Port of Savannah in the 1800s and now houses shipwreck artifacts pulled from many different rivers and oceans. One is an iron coffin. Who knows what you’ll see … or feel! trolleytours.com/savannah/ghost-tours 855.245.8992
Ghosts and Guns: Tobias McGriff, historian on all thing supernatural is coming out of retirement to lead the Ghosts and Guns event in Savannah on Oct. 20 – 21. Enjoy one of the top ghost tours in the world on Friday night, and on Saturday morning get ready for target practice with hands-on instruction before a friendly shooting competition. For more information about the event, visit: fdcghostsandguns.app.rsvpify.com